Title in succession: 8th
Date created: (1465) 23 October 1783
Grant by: Grand Master de Rohan-Polduc
Granted To: Dr. Luigi Maria Gatto LL.D
Rep: Deguara Caruana Gatto
Remainder to: his legitimate natural descendants in perpetuity
Present Holder: Maria Teresa
Deguara-Caruana-Gatto, Apap Bologna
Note: Title was granted without reference as to succession, first
disallowed by British Commission
who later regarded the grant as ad personam without the right of
succession. It was in 1883 that
the Com. of Privileges made a petition to the British Government which referred to Conte Nicolo Gatto LL.D as a
descendant to de primogenito in primogenitum in infinitum according
to the recognised feudal custom, admitted also by jurisprudence.
British crown recognition: 1883
Feudal Tribute: a flower every year on the feast of St. Martin,
Pope, 13th November
Initially created in 1465 to the Perollo Family and re-granted in 1783 to Dr. Luigi Maria
Gatto, LL.D, a Major of Cavalry under
the Knights of St John, a Jurat, Lt-Colonel of Malta Provincial Battery,
Royal Malta Fencible Regiment and Colonel commanding 1st division. A
private secretary to Sir Alexander Ball, the first British Governor of
Saverio Gatt was Uditore held Office under three Grand
Masters-Pinto, Ximenes and de Rohan. Gatt, who was one of the leading
lawyers, is especially remembered for his great contribution towards the
compilation of the code de Rohan. In 1783, his son Luigi was created the
first Count of Beberrua, just one year after the publication of the
The title of Count of Beberrua was created by Grand Master de
Rohan-Polduc. The title was granted without any reference as to succession
for this reason it was at first disallowed by the Royal Commission, who
regarded the grant as having been made ad personam, without the right of
The committee of Privileges however , in 1883
presented a petition to the British Govt. in which it was argued that by
the grant a real proper and noble fief had been erected . The petition
goes on to say “ All feuds are of their own nature perpetual and heritable
to the male descendants of the grantee, the fact that no words in the
patent direct the inheritance, does not make the grant endure for the life
time of the grantee only".
But it lawfully endures for all
the male issue de Primogenito in primogenitum infinitum according to the
recognised feudal custom, admitted also by local
These recognised principles of the
law, we have had occasion to submit in the first part of their report,
wherein it was stated that whenever there are no limitation restrictive
clauses or words to direct the inheritance in the deed of grant . These
principles obtain ex providentio regis, that we are not able to find
reason why the title of Conte di Beberrua should have been considered as
intended to endure only for the grantee’s
Our opinion is that the title at the
death of the grantee rested in Conte Nicolo Gatt LL.D , the surviving son
of the person first ennobled, and that it should continue to descend de
primogenito in primogenitum in finitum to the male descendants of the
grantee. Under these circumstances we consider this title fully deserving
the grant and favour of recognition from the Crown, that the bearer may
have his name duly extended in the Official list if Titolate.
Luigi’s son Dr Nicolo Gatto LL.D 2nd count died
unmarried and the title passed thru to his sisters son, Dr Antonio
Caruana-Gatto M.D, who became the 3rd Count and also married the daughter
of the Count of Santa Sofia, They had several children, and died in
Point in History: Count A. Caruana Gatto, born in
Valletta 1892 was elected to the senate representing the Nobility in the
Unione Politica Maltese. Before he became President he defended the
interests of the Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce in a court
case on the loss or witholding of books and of membership payment records
that belonged to the society. He was proficient in english, Itailian,
French, German and Greek and published several papers on various nature
subjects and sat on gov't committee on fisheries, agriculture, antiques
and that of the National Library.
Each child succeeded the title of Count , apart from
the youngest daughter , Guiseppina, who married the 5th Marquis di Gnien-is-Sultan and produced a daughter, who is the present Countess of
Present Countess Maria Teresa Apap Bologna-Caruana-Gatto,
Countess of Beberrua. , married in 1956 to Joseph Deguara and have three
Deguara Caruana Gatto is the eldest son and
heir to the Title of Count of Beberrua.
A short version of the family tree of the
Counts of Beberrua.
Dr Antonio Caruana Gatt LLD, 3rd
Count of Beberrua (1839-1919), married 1863 to Vincenza Formosa de
1. Dr Alfredo Caruana Gatt LL.D (1868-1926), 4th Count of
Beberrua, married 1902 to Assiminia Roncali, and dsp.
2. Rev. Mgr.
Roberto Caruana Gatt, 6th Count of Beberrua, (1871-1941), dunm
Frederico Caruana Gatt LL.D 5th Count of Beberrua, (1873-1934) dunm.
Maria Caruana Gatt (1879-1952) 7th Countess of Beberrua, married Nicodemo
Gandolfi, and dsp.
5. Guiseppina Caruana Gatt (1884-1939), married 1922
to Paolo Nicola Apap Bologna, 5th Marquis di Gnien is Sultan
Theresia Apap Bologna Caruana Gatt (1923-, 8th Countess di Beberrua,
married 1956 to Joseph Deguara
5.1.1. Paul Deguara Caruana Gatt (1959-,
Contino della Beberrua
5.1.2. Henry Deguara Caruana Gatt
5.1.3. Constance Deguara Caruana Gatt (1957-, married Francis
A more detailed version of the family tree of the
Counts of Beberrua.
Tomaso Gatt, married Rosa Maria Camilleri, with
1. Uditor Francesco Saverio Gatto, married 1751 to Maria Angelica Aquilina,
1.1. Dr Luigi Maria Gatto, LL.D (1762-1825), 1st Count of Beberrua
1.2. Fra. M'Angelo Gatto, dunm.
1.3. Vernanda Gatto, married Marquis Girolamo Delicata, (See Ghajn Qajjed).
2. Giovanna Gatto, married Felice Ferranti, with issue.
3. Dr. Federico Gatto, married Chiara Mannarino, with issue.
3.1. Rosa Gatto, married Giovanni Debono, with issue.
3.1.1. Federico Debono, married Angelica Burlo, with issue.
220.127.116.11. Giuseppe Debono.
18.104.22.168. Edward Debono.
22.214.171.124. Rosa Debono, married Vincenzo Formosa.
126.96.36.199. Giovanna Debono, married Giuseppe Cuschieri.
188.8.131.52. Fortunata Debono, married Emmanuele NN.
184.108.40.206. Giuditta Debono.
3.1.2. Innocenza Gatto, married Carmelo Camilleri, with issue.
220.127.116.11. Giovanna Camilleri, married (1) to Saverio Coen., Married (2)
18.104.22.168. Rosa Camilleri, married Dr. Salvatore de Salvo.
22.214.171.124. Adelaide Camilleri, married 1844 to Alessandro
126.96.36.199. Amabile Camilleri.
3.2. Maria Giuseppa Gatto, married 1790 to Emanuele
Borg Olivier, with issue.
4. Dr. Tomaso Gatto JUD., married 1772 to Teresa
Dandalona., with issue.
4.1. Canon. Carlo Gatto., dunm.
4.2. Dr. Gregorio Gatto JUD., married Agata
4.3. Giuseppe Gatto.
4.4. Maddalena Gatto.
4.5. Graziulla Gatto., married Notary Niccolo Decelis., with issue.
4.5.1. Maddalena Decelis., married 1796 to Gio
Niccolo dei Baroni Gauci-Ducoss.
4.5.2. Carlo Decelis., married Maria Debono.
188.8.131.52. (Natural) Francesca Decelis., married 1827 to Emmanuele
Muscat d'Angely, (Natural son of the Baroness of Benwarred).
Luigi Maria Gatto, LL.D (1762-1825), 1st Count of Beberrua (Cr:1783),
Married (1) 1784 to Marianna Dingli.
Married (2)1795 to Francesca Saveria Xerri, Daughter of Giovanni Xerri,
1. (Second Marriage) Dr Nicola Gatto, LL.D, 2nd Count
2. Angelica Gatto, married 1830 to Dr
G.S. Caruana, LL.D, with issue
2.1. Dr Antonio Caruana Gatto, LL.D, 3rd Count-
3. Eugenia Gatto, married 1819 to Giuseppe Bonici, with issue.
3.1. Filomaria Bonici-Gatto.
3.2. Elena Bonici-Gatto.
3.3. Elisabetta Bonici-Gatto.
3.4. Paolina Bonici-Gatto.
3.5. Lucia Bonici-Gatto.
3.6. Daniela Bonici-Gatto.
Nicolo Gatto LL.D (1800-91), 2nd Count of Beberrua, dunm.
Antonio Caruana Gatto, M.D. (1839-1919), 3rd Count of Beberrua,
Married 1867 to Vincenza
Formosa Montalto de Fremaux dei Conti di Santa Sofia, with
Dr Alfredo Caruana Gatto, LL.D, 4th Count-
2. Rev. Mgr. Roberto Caruana Gatto, 6th Count-
3. Dr Federico Caruana Gatto, LL.D, 5th Count-
4. Maria Caruana Gatto, 7th Countess-
5. Giuseppina Caruana Gatto (1884-1939), Married 1922 to Paolo
Nicolo Apap Bologna, 5th Marquis di Gnien-is-Sultan (See that Title).
5.1. Maria Teresa Apap Bologna Caruana Gatto (1923-, Acknowledged
by the COP as the 8th Countess of Beberrua,
Married 1956 to Joseph Deguara, with issue
1. Paul Deguara Caruana Gatto (1959-
2. Henry Deguara Caruana Gatto (1960-
3. Corinne Deguara Caruana Gatto (1957-, married 1984 to Francis
Cachia Caruana, (See Ghariexem e Tabia for descent), with
3.1. Malcolm Cachia Caruana, (1985-
3.2. Francesco Cachia Caruana, (1987-
Alfredo Caruana Gatto, LL.D ( 1869-1926), 4th Count of Beberrua,
Married 1902 to Assiminia Roncali (Daughter of Dr. Zaccaria Roncali, LL.D,
Pusines Judge of Malta) and Dsp.
Federico Caruana Gatto, LL.D, (1873-1934), 5th Count of Beberrua, and dunm.
Mgr. Roberto Caruana Gatto, (1871-1941), 6th Count of Beberrua, dunm
Caruana Gatto, (1879-1952), 7th Countess of Beberrua,
Married to Nicodemo Gandolfo, and dsp.
Contino Paul Deguara Gatto, Contino of Beberrua.
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References: 1) Gauci,C.A.," The Genealogy and Heraldry of
the Noble Families of Malta", Gulf Publishing Ltd, Malta, 1981.
Gauci,C.A.," The Genealogy and Heraldry of the Noble Families of Malta,
Volume Two", Publishers Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd, 1992.
and Mallet, P.,"The Palaeologos Family- A Genealogical Review" ,Publishers
Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd, 1985
4) Gauci, C.A.," A Guide to the
Maltese Nobility", Publishers Enterprise Group (PEG) Ltd, Malta,
5) Montalto, J., "The Nobles of Malta-1530-1800", Midsea Books
Ltd, Malta, 1980.
6) De Piro, N., "Casa Rocco Piccola", The Conde' Nast
Publications 1999.' Http://www.vol.net.mt/casarocca '
7) Giles Ash, S.,
"The Nobility of Malta", Publishers Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd,
8) Said Vassallo, C.M., Unpublished research papers.
Vassallo, C.M., www.maltagenealogy.com
10) Sant Fournier, Unpublished research papers